Target: CEO of the United Parcel Service David P. Abney
Goal: Provide working air conditioning in all UPS vans or vehicles used by delivery people.
The temperature of the front cargo area of the average mail van is 15 to 20 degrees warmer than the outside, and some UPS vans don’t have working air conditioning. Some drivers in Arizona, a state with notoriously high temperatures every year, can spend eight to ten hour shifts in trucks that average at 125 degrees almost half of the year.
Being that it is illegal to leave a child or pet in a car this hot for that length of time, it should logically be illegal to treat employees this way as well. This is not only cruelly uncomfortable work conditions, but can also pose a serious health risk.
Because UPS delivery workers are not allowed to end their day and return home until all of their packages are delivered, these drivers are not given any other option under company policy than to endure these painfully dangerous conditions. If heat exhaustion occurs, these people can go into heat stroke and develop serious organ damage or even die.
Delivery drivers are the only employees of this company that are not given the guarantee of working air conditioning systems in their vehicles, so it is certainly not an issue for UPS to extend their budget to cover this sector of their work force, especially when it’s a vital necessity to their day-to-day life. Tell the UPS to follow suit with every one of their competitors and provide air conditioning to all of its drivers.
Dear Mr. Abney,
I believe that all workers deserve comfortable and healthy conditions during their daily duties. But right now, not all of your employees are provided that service. Delivery drivers are the only portion of your workforce that is not consistently provided with working air conditioning in their vehicles. This is obviously a requirement for their health and comfort, especially in states that can have temperatures in the hundreds almost five months out of the year.
On average, the cargo cabin of the delivery vehicles are 15 to 20 degrees hotter than the outside temperature, and if outside summer temperatures are already over 100 degrees, this can be a deadly mix for delivery drivers. And because delivery workers are not allowed to finish their shift until all packages are delivered, this can leave some people trapped in these conditions for up to ten hours at a time. Please change your policy to include delivery van drivers in the guarantee of working air conditioning.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Rudolf Stricker